What Do You Do If You Spot A Honey Bee Swarm
Some would argue that you'd be hard pressed to find such a small creature with such a big ecological impact as the honey bee. The buzzing little pollinators play an exceptional role in our ecosystem and many are concerned for their future. In fact, some say that the survival of the honey bee is essential to our very own survival.
Honey bees swarm as part of their mating ritual, especially if the queen bee feels as though there isn't enough room in a hive. She will actually leave the hive, taking with her a number of the pre-existing colony. In the abandon colony, a new queen will take over and will continue to thrive. Honey bees in a reproductive swarm are not aggressive so are not a threat to humans. According to the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, a swarm can range in size from softball to larger than basketball sized.
The swarm will fly away, land and cluster on a tree limb, brush or other location. The swarm cluster may be the size of a softball to larger than a basketball. Normally, this is not a permanent home and they usually move onto a preferred home such as a hollow tree.
While swarming season in the Tristate isn't until May, it's not uncommon to see honey bee swarms as early as March or April according to Indiana DNR. So what do you do if you find a swarm of honey bees on your property or worse, inside your siding? The Indiana Department of Natural Resources has some suggestions.
If you find a swarm on a tree or shrub, you can contact a local bee keeper to come and collect them. If the swarm is in your siding or wall of your home, it may be a bit more of a challenge as it often requires deconstruction of part of the home to remove them. You can find a list of Indiana bee keepers on the Indiana Department of Natural Resources website as well as a list of questions you should be prepared to answer before calling a bee keeper. In Kentucky, you can contact the Kentucky State Bee Keepers Association. If you want to help the local honey bee population, you can plant flowers that are bee friendly like sunflowers, lavender, mint and coneflowers.
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